Punishments For A Misdemeanor In The Fourth Degree
When it comes to misdemeanor in the fourth degree, the definition varies from one state to the next. However, in most states misdemeanor in the fourth degree are considered to low level crimes like petty theft and shop lifting.
Based on the criminal code of a state, punishments for a misdemeanor in the fourth degree also vary.
In some states fourth degree misdemeanor carries a jail time of not more than 30 days and the maximum fine that can be imposed is $500. This is the punishments for a misdemeanor in the fourth degree in the state of Ohio.
However, most people rather pay a fine than serve time. The good news is that there are ways of avoiding jail time when it comes to misdemeanor in the fourth degree. There are three ways in which you can avoid jail -- winning your trial, having the charges dismissed or negotiating a plea bargain. Usually people opt for negotiation.
Usually the prosecutor has the option whether to file charge or drop the charges. This is determined by evidence of the misdemeanor. However, you should not keep your fingers crossed in getting the charges dropped. The best way forward for you is to seek professional help and that means getting a qualified criminal defense attorney.
If for some reason you are unable to hire a lawyer, you should request the court to appoint a counsel for you when you make your first appearance in court. This is much better than representing yourself as an attorney would be familiar with the prosecutor's approach and sentencing that is usually given by the court.
However, the fact that misdemeanor in the fourth degree is considered to be a minor crime, you should be working towards avoiding jail time and the best way to do this with an attorney's help. But do bear in mind that you will only be able to avoid jail time if you have no prior convictions, are not a habitual offender and have not used a weapon when the misdemeanor was being carried out.
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